Many people we know complain quite a bit. And from time to time, we’re guilty of it ourselves. But what’s interesting is that science suggests that venting, ranting or “just letting it out” isn’t good for our mental health, and may have serious repercussions.
Whenever we engage in a new behaviour, our brain makes new synaptic pathways. And when we repeat that behaviour those pathways get strengthened. For the things we do most often, which form habits, the speed of that pathway goes from what was like a 56k modem to a fibre broadband connection: it triggers so fast that it feels automatic, like our natural behaviour.
As these ‘automatic’ reactions get built, the synapses move closer together and fire faster, making it even easier for those thoughts to trigger. In fact your brain is so effective at supercharging your synaptic pathways, that things which once felt odd or strange now feel utterly natural. Take driving for instance, learning to drive once felt unnatural yet now its the most natural thing in the world to hop in the car and go for a drive, even though the technology has only been around for just over a century.
Ultimately, whatever you train your brain to do, it will adapt and get good at it. And if you spend more time in resentment and complaining rather than empowering yourself and feeling grateful, which pathways are getting fired up, and repeated as your ‘automatic’ reaction?
Now it’s often been said to me that success is a series of effective habits repeated daily, so let me ask you:
When you complain, does it empower you in your daily actions, or does it weaken you?
Does it make you stronger to complain, more ready for your day, or weaker?
Would it be more empowering to take action to solve those things, rather than complain?
When your daily actions compound over time, that investment can turn into profit or loss. If you invest in your health, and treat your family and friends right, you will have fantastic health and relationships. If you live with negativity, complain and damage your health it makes it increasingly unlikely you’ll have companions to share your time with, and the health to even enjoy their company.
Your daily thoughts and actions matter, as that is the compounding investment on what success is built upon. If you can use your time, money and energy to generate solutions for others, and leverage that value you can sell that as a product or service, and that's the foundation to financial abundance.
These claims are indeed backed up by author Steven Parton who adds, that every time a thought is triggered “the synapses grow closer together in order to decrease the distance the electrical charge has to cross. This is a microcosmic example of evolution, of adaptation. The brain is rewiring its own circuitry, physically changing itself, to make it easier and more likely that the proper synapses will share the chemical link and thus spark together–in essence, making it easier for the thought to trigger. Therefore, your first mystical scientific evidence: your thoughts reshape your brain, and thus are changing a physical construct of reality.”
Put plainly, your thoughts rewire your brain. And “the synapses you’ve most strongly bonded together (by thinking about more frequently) come to represent your default personality: your intelligence, skills, aptitudes, and most easily accessible thoughts.”
And for now I’ll leave you to your thoughts!
P.S. for more from Steven Parton you can read his article here: The Science of Happiness: Why complaining is literally killing you. | Curious Apes
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